Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Creative Killer

It has been heard by experts in art and writing and ministry say that "busy" is the killer of creativity.  My response would be a slight shrug and "eh" of agreement.  Never has there been such a tangible example for me as the 7 food fast.  Beginning this month, there were grand ideas of what I would make with my 7 foods.  I scoured the internet, searched recipes, replaced ingredients, devised my own concoctions, set out weekly menus and made my shopping list (that was easy).  There was going to be rice dishes, smothered chicken, chicken and dumplings, and more.  But "busy" is the creative killer.

I have eaten the same basic thing almost every day b/c it is quick and easy;  oil in pan, green pepper in pan, chicken in pan, salt and pepper, slap in tortilla; oil in pan, green pepper in pan, chicken in pan, salt and pepper, slap in tortilla; oil in pan, green pepper in pan, chicken in pan, salt and pepper, slap in tortilla.

Quick and easy.  It makes me wonder how many things in my life are simply done the quick and easy way.  How much am I depriving God the glory by quick and easy, how many of God's blessings am I missing by quick and easy, how am I depriving others divine moments b/c of quick and easy.

I have been most fearful about media month in this 7 months of fasting from excess.  But, I actually am looking forward to it.  Perhaps, by cutting out a bit of the noise, the attention nabber, I will slow down and embellish in some creativity.  B/c I am obviously so dependent on busy, the month that may hurt the most is Sabbath.

Fear the Sabbath.  There is some creativity waiting in it.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Bustle

The bustle.  The bustle of breathing throughout the day, the bustle of kids to dress and press and clean and feed.  The bustle of dressing and pressing and cleaning and feeding myself.  The bustle of Spring Break, the bustle of ministry, work and wife and life.  The bustle.  Making beds and paperwork and reading and studying and writing and ....  The bustle.  My problems, our issues, your concerns.  Gas in the car, wash the car, feed the dog, change diapers.  The bustle.

I have not been diligent in writing and sharing on this blog.  I blame the bustle.  But, I have prayed!  Often when I get caught up in the bustle I also lose sight and lost touch with the Father.  Not this time.  Seven Foods has kept me in his presence.  B/c our need for food and drink and sacrifice and discipline and creativity and community and commitment and counsel and GRACE all pointing to our need for communication with our Father, I have not lost touch.  So even amongst the bustle, Seven reminded me to remain in the presence of the Father through prayer.  Thank you Seven.  Thank you Jen Hatmaker.  Thank you Chicken and eggs and green peppers and rice and apples (lots of apples) and tortillas and coffee.  Thank you Father.

So, how has it affected you?

Sunday, March 4, 2012


Ok, everyone has had time to explore some recipes.  List your winners for others to try.  Seems just about everyone has chicken and eggs.

You can list your failures as well....

For instance, I tried to broil apple slices - nope.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Fasting for What?

I must confess that I have never been a diligent faster even though Jesus speaks of it as an expected part of life when he says, "when you fast" in Matthew 6:16.  So if it is to be a normal part of life (or in our case a normal part of 7), what is fasting for?

There are two types of fasting.  One is individual fasting and the other is corporate ( we are participating in a bit of both).  Examples of fasting range from the mourning of sin, fasting during grief, fasting for repentance and confession,  seeking protection and guidance.  Prophets fast during ministry and Jesus fasts before beginning his ministry.  Jesus teaches in Mark 9 that certain miraculous acts (driving out a type of demon) is only performed through fasting and prayer.

After fasting, prayers are heard, repentance occurs (see Nineveh), angels visit (Acts 10), demons are driven out, and guidance is given.  So, why don't we fast more?

May these 7 months of fasting open my eyes to the dark places in my life, drive me to repentance and confession, and lead me to a life that looks more like what God intends it to be.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

First Day!

So today is the first day of 7 foods.  As I got up this morning hungry, I thought about my only real breakfast option - coffee and apples.  A little dread set in.  A little panic set in.  Community accountability set in.  Oh no set in.

And then.

I was reminded that this is not about just denying myself food, not just about being hungry, not just about accomplishment, not even just about disciplining myself.  As a matter of fact, it is not about me at all.  Fasting encompasses all of these elements for the purpose of connection with God.  So, today as I feel a hunger pain, as I deny myself food, as I accomplish the goal for a minute, an hour, a day, as I discipline myself I will ask God what He wants of me, what needs to be revealed to me, what repentance from excess do I need to make.  In this moments, I will try to quiet my spirit and ask God to speak.

By the way, snatched up a starburst off my desk and got it half chewed before I realized what I was doing.  Spit it out.  Wow did it taste good.

I will miss you sweet sugary little goodnesses.

God speak.

Friday, February 24, 2012

List your foods!

Ok, so here is a place to list your foods, but go a step further and tell why.  Why is bell pepper on your list or mushrooms or etc.  Eventually we will need to share recipes.

I Guess I am in?

To be honest, I agreed to do this before reading the book.  My beautiful wife came to me with this idea and as i have done a million times in my life I jumped in with both feet without really looking at where i am going to land.  Though with Julie leading, it is surely a place that will leave me better than before.

Anyways, I am finally reading the book and realize this is going to be more difficult than i imagined.  I know that it will take community to keep me all in because i can be a person that blazes quickly with ideas and smolders just as fast.  So, to anyone that stops by this blog while journeying through cyber space know that I need your help.  I'll need your community.

O, and if you have already been on this journey or a similar one I am open to advice on 7 foods that will blend together to make the most exotic of meals.  Bc I don't do bland, simple, plain very well when it comes to food.  And, you better make that 6 foods that will turn into at least 9 exotic different dishes b/c coffee is going to be one of my foods!  C'mon I am already giving up BBQ Chips and oven pizzas.